Saturday, August 10, 2013

Mocha Orange Muffins

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Has it really been more than a month since my last post? I know I said I was going to post at least once a week, but this time I didn't even realize time go by. Wow... guess I am more sleep-deprived than I realized!

Also, and I must be honest here, I don't have that same drive to blog that I had before. I'm still baking and cooking like crazy, but it feels like no one is reading my blog anymore. Hmm. Don't mean to sound whiny here. Just saying. But this week, I got a lovely email from a person I don't know - her name is Cindy - and she just wrote to say hello and that she's a SAHM with two little boys and that she knows how tough a job it can be! And she said 'I look forward to more posts from you'. That really made me want to post again! Thank you, Cindy!!! <3

Today I want to share a lovely muffin recipe again. This one is so unusual and complex that I would classify it 'a grown-up muffin'. Very mildly sweet, a good hit of coffee and orange zest and bittersweet chocolate chips make it a very interesting muffin. A lot of ingredients to organize, but not at all a labor-intensive recipe. I hope you like it!
Mocha Orange Muffins
Makes 6 large or 9 small muffins
Adapted from 'Muffins Galore' by Catherine Atkinson 

150g all purpose flour
2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp salt
30g cocoa powder 
2 1/2 tbsp soft light brown sugar
1 heaping tbsp ground coffee 
(Not instant! Freshly ground roasted coffee is best.)
30g unsalted butter, softened
1/2 cup plain yoghurt
1/2 cup whipping cream
2 tbsp milk
1 large egg 
1 tsp vanilla
Zest of 1 whole orange 
1/3 cup bittersweet chocolate chips

1. Preheat your oven to 180C or 350F. Line your muffin tin with paper liners. 
2 In a small bowl, cream the butter and slowly add in the yoghurt, the milk and the cream. Whisk together well. 
3. Add the egg and vanilla. Whisk well to combine and set aside. 
4. In a large bowl, combine the flour, baking powder, salt and cocoa powder. Stir well to combine. 
5. Add the sugar and coffee powder and mix well. 
6. Make a well in the center of the dry mixture and pour in the butter mixture. Stir well till just combined and no dry mixture is seen. Don't overmix. 
7. Stir in the chocolate chips and orange zest. 
8. Spoon the batter into the tins and bake for 18-25 minutes (depending on the size of the muffins) or until the tops of the muffins are springy to the touch. 
My husband, the coffee lover, loved these muffins but we both found the orange flavor a little intense. Maybe next time, I'll add less of the zest or even skip it altogether. But if you are someone who loves the combination of orange and chocolate, I would suggest you go with the original measurements!

These muffins, like most muffins, freeze great! There are five sitting in our freezer in a freezer bag waiting to be warmed up for breakfast one morning when I don't feel like baking!

Surprisingly, my daughter ate almost a whole muffin. I thought she wouldn't like the bittersweet taste, but as usual, she surprised me. 
Speaking of my daughter, if you follow me on my Facebook page, you would know how crazy she is about baking. She knows recipes by heart and she's not even four! She really amazes me. This week, we made these cupcakes together. 
Aren't they cute? That's buttercream 'spaghetti', a hazelnut truffle 'meatball', raspberry jam 'tomato sauce' and grated white chocolate 'Parmesan' on a simple buttery vanilla cupcake. Of course, I did a lot of it but she talked me through the whole thing because she's the one who has watched the tutorial video on how to make these! So proud of my little girl! :)

If you want to keep up with what's happening with us and get updates on regular posts and recipes, follow me on Facebook.

Until next time! 


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Gitanjali Sabu said...

Those cupcakes look awesome!! I wish I could taste them :(
And now I'm craving spaghetti and meatball in a cup!!

Tripti said...

Please don't stop blogging Marsha....I love your blog and regularly make recipes from it. We've spoken once about a year ago when I asked your advice about how to go about a birthday cake for my daughter. Glad your back to blogging.

Kimby said...

Marsha, you didn't sound whiny at all re: fewer readers. An article I read the other day noted we've become a "visual" culture -- folks look for photos or recipes, not "reading." Also, the social forums have made it possible (and convenient) to 'like' or leave a comment without actually reading posts. Plus there's a surge in the number of blogs out there. It's a shame, really. People are missing out on stories like your daughter's kitchen finesse at her young age -- incredible! (The next Julia?) Oh yeah, and then there's emoticons. :) ... a couple of quick keystrokes instead of typing: "Your post made me smile. I'm so glad I read it. Thank you for sharing that delightful story." By the way, I also enjoyed your photos and recipe... ;)

theharriedcook said...

We'll see what we can do about that craving the next time you're in town :)

theharriedcook said...

Awwww Tripti! Really sweet of you to leave this comment! I truly appreciate it. Yes, I remember those phone calls. If I remember right, your daughter's birthday is in September? Did the cake turn out well? Would love to see some pictures :) thanks again for the really sweet comment! Hugs

theharriedcook said...

You're so right, Kimby! And I truly wasn't being whiny about it. It is just a little discouraging to go from having 100+ comments per post to having 2-3 per post. But you know what - the blog was never about the numbers for me. I'm doing it for myself and for my girls :) so nothing's changed! I'll just keep doing what I do and that's enough for now! Hugs to you! You're awesome :)

Deepa Tharien Jacob said...

I might not have commented, but I'm still reading! I totally understand the time issue. My blog is languishing over here too! Your daughter amazes me! Ever thought of doing a storybook inspired theme for your bakes? your spag-meatball cupcakes reminded me of the storybook "cloudy with a chance of meatballs".

theharriedcook said...

Thank you, Deepa! So reassuring to know someone reading :)

Tripti said...

Hi Marsha,
Sorry I didn't see your comment until just now. Things have been a bit crazy because I now have a 5 month old boy as well!! Yes, my daughter's birthday is the end of this month and she's turning 3. I finally didn't use the fondant on the cake that time because my modelling skills were quite hopeless. I finally stuck with simple white and pink butter cream flowers on a round cake (boring, I know...but she seemed to love it anyway). I am going to give it another go this time round... we're trying to decide between "the lorax" and "despicable me". Will send you pictures when I have a chance. Thanks for the reply.

theharriedcook said...

Congrats!!! :) my little one is around the same age. She's 7 months old now. And my first will be four years old next month :) a

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